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How to Write an Argumentative Essay

How to Write an Argumentative Essay

Some students may struggle when it comes to argumentative essays. Usually, this task is assigned to students on the SAT, ACT, IELTS, and TOEFL tests. Professors also assign this type of essay as coursework. Without knowing the correct steps to write a good argumentative essay, it can be very tough and time-consuming.

Many students around the US face this task annually. All it takes is gathering information and applying the correct citation format. The rest is a piece of cake! Follow this guide to learn how to write an argumentative essay with EssayPro. Learning this style of writing is the start of your journey to getting the grades you deserve.

Table of Contents

What Is an Argumentative Essay?

Argumentative essay is a style of academic writing where the author presents both sides of an argument or an issue. The purpose is to inform rather than convince. That’s why an argumentative essay is not to be confused with a persuasive essay.

The thesis includes all counterpoints from both opposing arguments. It’s almost like a political debate with oneself.

There are two ways to come across this form of the essay:

  • One of the ways is to present both arguments equally
  • The other way is to give one argument more forcefully than the opposing factors

By practicing argumentative writing, students can evaluate issues from multiple perspectives. When writing an argumentative essay, it’s important to focus on facts and information rather than personal ideas or preferences.

The author may present arguments equally, or support one in favor of others. Regardless, the thesis must include all the primary points (and counterpoints) which will appear in the essay.

Argumentative Essay Topics

Argumentative Essay Topics

Just like with all other essay types, there are tons of topics to choose from when writing an argumentative essay. However, it is important to remember that they must be in a debate format. In other words, explain why option A is better than option B, or vice versa.

Here are some good argumentative essay topics to get you started:

  • Apple vs. Microsoft: Which software brand is more useful for students?

  • Do violent video games have a negative psychological impact on children?

  • From a financial perspective, should one invest in cryptocurrencies?

  • From an economic standpoint, are electric cars better overall?

  • Has society become too reliant on technology?

Interesting Argumentative Essay Topics for High School

As students will begin writing this type of content in school, it is essential to give them easy essay topics so they can get a grasp of the task. Here are some examples:

  • What is the most important second language to know as a US student?

  • Should the minimum driving age be lowered?

  • Are standardized tests a fair reflection of students skills?

  • Are athletes overpaid for their skills?

  • Should high school students be free to choose their classes?

Topics for College

As we transition to the university level, the question asked alongside the complexity of content should increase. With that being said, here are some challenging topics for college students.

  • Is there enough evidence to prove that news sources have a biased agenda?

  • Would the legalization of marijuana as a recreational drug be economically justifiable?

  • Can we constitute Russia as a superpower alongside the USA and China?

  • What was the most influential technological advancement in the history of humanity?

  • Should we sacrifice some public services for lowered tax brackets?

Argumentative Essay Outline

Now that we understand what this type of writing is all about, we can start putting pieces of the argumentative essay outline together. Usually written in the five-paragraph structure, this argumentative essay outline will consist of an introduction, 2-3 body paragraphs, and a conclusion. Logically, each of those three sections will have a unique structure, so understanding them on an individual level will help ensure a smooth writing process.

argumentative essay writing steps

We will be using "the internet" as the most significant technological advancement in society as an example

Introduction (3 Parts)

  1. How To Start An Argumentative Essay Outline (Hook Statement): As with most other types of essays, one should attempt to captivate the reader's interest from the very beginning. To do this, create a sentence that stands out from the rest of the text. Consider something such as a rhetorical question, funny quote or intriguing idea. The goal is to get your audience reaching for that bag of popcorn right after reading the hook!

  2. Background Information: After gathering the audience's attention, the next step is to present any necessary context to narrow the focus. This information should not reveal any of the main arguments from your body. Also, it should ideally transition the train of thought towards the thesis statement.

  3. Thesis Statement: The last sentence of the introduction should present the focal point/central argument of your entire essay. It is essential to writing a thesis correctly, and this is accomplished through proper phrasing. Remember: your primary objective is to defend your idea, so the thesis must DIRECTLY state what your idea is and why it is correct.

argumentative essay introduction

Body Paragraphs (4 Steps)

  1. Topic Sentence: Start with a sentence that transitions the focus from the previous paragraph to the current one; it should also introduce the main sub-argument for that particular section.

  2. Claim: After presenting your topic sentence, it is time to link your main sub-argument with the thesis statement. The goal is to explain how this point validates and strengthens your central message.

  3. Evidence: After providing a valid claim, you must defend it with factual support. Examples of this can be statistics, references or logical ideas that support ones claim since they are getting information from external sources, adding to the essays overall validity.

  4. Concluding Statement: After presenting a defendable claim and supporting it with evidence, one must end the body paragraph with a concluding statement. The primary goal of this sentence is to summarize the overall significance of the claim to the thesis. In other words, why was this particular point so essential?

Note that this structure works for each body paragraph. The main difference comes with the actual claim, supporting evidence, etc.

argumentative essay body structure

Conclusion (3 Steps)

  1. Restate The Thesis: The first sentence of any conclusion should always be a restatement of your central message (thesis statement). Using assertive language, restate your thesis in an "I have 100% proven this point" type of way. When information is presented to an audience with confidence, they are subconsciously more inclined to believe that it is in fact, true.

  2. Brief Summarization of Sub Arguments: Most likely, the audience has already forgotten some of the information you presented. For this reason, go back through and review your main points, giving your argument closure.

  3. Overall Concluding Statement: To end an argumentative essay outline with a bang, present a memorable concluding statement. Usually, this sentence will express the universal importance of the information and should leave the reader with a call to action for further investigation.

argumentative essay conclusion

The Writing Process

When it comes to sitting down and writing an argumentative essay, the author has four primary objectives:

  1. Brainstorm + Topic Selection: Obviously, before one can start putting pen to paper, they have to figure out what they will be writing about. Unless one has been given a predetermined topic, they will usually have freedom of choice. EssayPro always recommends that students choose a passionate theme; doing so will naturally give the author more enthusiasm and motivation to do a good job.

  2. Research, Research, Research: Even if you are savvy in the field of choice, there is a bundle of information out there that is unknown to you. Use various sources such as reliable internet articles, encyclopedias, historical documents, and other related materials to gain a well-rounded understanding of a topic and what avenue you will approach.

  3. Writing A Rough Draft: Now that you have a thesis and valid external information, you can start putting pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard.) Follow the outline laid out above for guaranteed success and keep in mind the following things:

  4. Writing a Final Draft: After finishing your rough draft, take some time away from the essay. Let your brain recover and come back to it the next day (or a few hours later, depending on how bad of a procrastinator you are) with a fresh perspective. More likely than not, you will see flaws in grammar, vocabulary, and logic. Make those final amendments and read your essay out loud for a final polish. If it sounds good, then looks like you are finished!

argumentative writing tips

Final Tips

Referring to tips can help you to write a good argumentative essay in many ways. When it comes to writing and constructing your final draft, make sure all of these tips are considered, below. Once these writing tips have been revised and applied, you are one step closer to mastering the art of argumentative essay writing.

  • Find a topic and make sure it has counter arguments
  • Gather of research on both sides of the argument to avoid sounding biased
  • Make sure all of the facts included in your argumentative essay are accurate
  • Follow guides that illustrate how to write an argumentative essay step by step to improve the way your performance on these assignments
  • Structure the essay properly with: Introduction, Body, and Conclusion or you will lose marks
  • Before writing, list all information in an outline
  • Remember to cite the sources used and avoid plagiarism
  • Get other people to read your work to see if they’re persuaded by your writing
  • Don’t include your own opinion in the work. Stick to key facts and evidence
  • Run your paper through a grammar checker - just in case!

Argumentative Essay Examples

Down below you can find some good argumentative essay examples. The first essay talks about the value that comes with the freedom of strikes for public workers. The second essay discusses the importance of economic equality in a nation, alongside possible repercussions and potential threats if not met.

Both present fantastic arguments that students in need of help can learn from!

Argumentative Essay Example

Argumentative Essay Example

Need some one-on-one guidance?

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Remember, academics are challenging, but if you approach them the right way, any challenge is overcomable. So get cracking!

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